Friday, February 05, 2010

Budget follies short-takes:
Waa, waa, waa: I want mine!

One of the two pillars that make deficit reduction and responsible governance that "promotes the general welfare" (that's from the Constitution in case you've forgotten) so very difficult is the refusal of rich people to pay taxes. More taxes to do anything useful will have to come from rich people: they are the ones with the money. But the conservative polling outfit Rasmussen has documented that magical thinking wins out:

President Obama has now turned his attention to the ballooning federal budget deficit, but a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that a modest plurality of voters (41 percent) prefer a budget deficit with tax cuts over a balanced budget that requires higher taxes. Thirty-six percent (36 percent) would rather see a balanced budget with higher taxes. Twenty-three percent (23 percent) are not sure which is better. ...

...almost half (47 percent) of GOP voters think it’s possible to balance the budget without raising taxes, but 53 percent of Democrats don’t....Those in the Political Class are twice as likely as Mainstream voters -- 70 percent to 35 percent - to believe it is not possible to balance the federal budget without raising taxes.

"Mainstream" is Rasmussen's tendencious label for voters who "tend to trust the wisdom of the crowd more than their political leaders..." That is, the Palinites and many others of numerous stripes, including the large fraction of us who want to protect the privileges of the rich because we think maybe we'll join them some day. I wonder if what looks like future prolonged economic stagnation will disabuse more of us of this fantasy?

(Since we're in national budget season, I'm not going to to resist offering occasional short comments on budget matters and process under this headline, just as I have done about health care reform. I have strong foundational views on what the U.S. government ought to be doing about and with taxpayers' money that I've laid out in this post.)

1 comment:

Kay Dennison said...

Don't resist!!!! I learn a lot from your posts!!!!

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